Beware of Scammers when Renewing your Driver’s License (2022):
With the country’s remaining backlog on driver’s licenses in the country this can be an incredibly stressful time for motorists. In 2020 Justice Project South Africa voiced concerns about the number of scammers that could be found around licensing centers in the country. They warn that these scammers can be very convincing especially to motorists who wish to renew their vehicle’s licensing disk or driver’s license with as little fuss as possible.
Often scammers will prey on victims outside of the facility or while queuing. Scammers ask motorists to hand over their licenses and once they return with the relevant documents, they ask the victim to pay upfront. The stress and unpleasantness of the task - waiting in line, speaking to uninterested officials, knowing the licensing departments are struggling with backlogs countrywide – only means that people will be more easily coerced into interacting with scammers.
The biggest problem is that drivers who fall prey to these scams are offered very little recourse in the situation and the fraudulent parties often end up getting away with it. The licensing officers have been reported to be of very little help and victims approaching SAPS (South African Police Services) are often told they cannot assist because the victims willingly gave the scammers their money.
Here are some tips to avoid getting scammed:
1. Do not accept assistance from people who offer to help you before you have entered the facility
2. Ensure that you only ever give out cash at a counter and wait for a receipt
3. Get the name of the official who is assisting you
4. Do not accept any offers from individuals who want to fast-track the process
5. Do not let individuals pressure you into paying them upfront and ensure you are not being charged more than the cost of the service
The 2020 Article:
How to Identify Scams: